Cardiologist Dr. Wes updates us on the recent AHA recommendations:

So, although the EKG is out, practitioners must not forget to take a thorough personal and family history, listen for murmurs, check the blood pressure from the arm, check for femoral pulses in the legs (to exclude coarctation of the aorta), and note physical characteristics of Marfan's Syndrome.
Will this be applied? Likely not. Many are already ...

Read more...

That finding is no surprise, but the fact that it did not significantly affect the highest-severity visits is:

"Most HDHP (high-deductible health plan) members did not forgo high-severity emergency department visits and seemed able to distinguish low-severity conditions not requiring emergency department care."

A rare skin condition:



(via KipEsquire)

KipEsquire makes a good point:

My point here is simply that a "right to health care" ought to include a "right to a kidney." If such a right is impossible (and it is), then so too is "universal health care." Stated differently, "socialized medicine" and "universal health care" are not synonymous. It is not "fear mongering" to use former term rather than the latter "” it is simple intellectual honesty.

Cute ditty. A med student talks about Minute Clinic medicine:

More and more I'm seeing retail-based clinics treating people who obviously don't need anything more than just rest and OTC meds with strong antibiotics, pain killers, and then sending them to their PCP when nothing gets better.

A controversial plan is coming under fire:

Prison inmates in South Carolina could get up to six months shaved off their sentences if they donated a kidney or their bone marrow, under a proposed bill before the state Senate.

"We have a lot of people dying as they wait for organs, so I thought about the prison population," said state Sen. Ralph Anderson, the bill's main sponsor. "I believe ...

Read more...

In the area of traumatic brain injuries, they are falling seriously short:

In general, these caregivers said that their grievously wounded soldiers had either been written off prematurely or not given aggressive rehabilitation or options for care. From the beginning, they said, the government should have joined forces with civilian rehabilitation centers instead of trying to ramp up its limited brain-injury treatment program alone during a time of war. ...

Read more...

Home health aides. And they're still unlikely to meet the demands of the population.

Neurolaw

The fascinating intersection between neuroscience and the law. From the NY Times magazine this weekend:

American law holds people criminally responsible unless they act under duress (with a gun pointed at the head, for example) or if they suffer from a serious defect in rationality "” like not being able to tell right from wrong. But if you suffer from such a serious defect, the law generally doesn't ...

Read more...

It's coming soon to Medicare.

It's a possibility, says the psychiatrist who identified the disorder:

. . . skeptics believe the diagnosis is a 'biobabble' label, which has evolved from a soundbite culture that is too prepared to medicalise anti-social human traits.

Dr Spitzer, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University in New York, now says the classification led to many people being diagnosed as medically disordered when their mood swings and behaviour were ...

Read more...

The well of foreign-trained doctors will eventually run out:

Dr. David Luehr, president of the Minnesota Medical Association and a family physician at the Raiter Clinic in Cloquet, said his annual salary was flat for several years. Unless salaries go up for family doctors, Luehr sees a point at which it might be hard to continue attracting foreign medical graduates.

A hospital is handing out photo cards of physicians to help hospitalized patients identify them. Kind of like baseball cards, without the statistics.

Use of sleep medications have more than doubled from 2000 to 2005. The pharmacy overdose of the American population continues:

"From the patient's and society's standpoint, we're overdoing it," said Villa, a pulmonologist and co-medical director of the sleep center at Holy Name.

He thinks the heavy marketing of the sleeping drugs has a lot to do with their popularity. "When pharmaceutical companies find a problem, they develop ...

Read more...

Full body scams

More reasons why full-body scans are not recommended:

The company's technicians performed the scans at a Great Falls hotel in June. Customers received reports of the results in the mail some time later.

"One woman was told she had a normal uterus and ovaries, although they had been removed years ago. Another was told she had a mass on her kidney, and she had none," said Dr. Leslie Russell. ...

Read more...

About 30 minutes a day.

The VA was found guilty of discrimination on the basis of pay:

Dr. Talukdar, who now works in Houston, was terminated in 2002 after participating in a federal investigation into whether the VAMC was underpaying doctors in the visa program. As a result of the audit, the Wage and Hour Division of the Labor Dept. ordered the hospital to pay more than $200,000 in back wages to several doctors, ...

Read more...

Trips to the art gallery are being incorporated into some medical schools:

A few other medical schools have incorporated art museum trips into their curricula to encourage students to look and think differently about their patients, but UNMC may be the first to bring artists into the classroom to share their creative process.

Striking images

Thanks to Street Anatomy for sharing these visuals from the 2006 Biomedical Image Awards.

Performance measures

Internist Robert Centor with three pieces discussing this inevitable trend.

Most Popular